Earth Day isn’t just an occasion to make a tiny dent in the crises hitting our planet. It’s also a day to celebrate consumerism, as evidenced by my inbox, which is overflowing with marketers who want me to write about their products. A sampling of subject lines:
- Earth Day makeup from Hynt
- Go Green this Earth Day with Numi Organic Tea
- This Earth Day, Wayne Brady Makes a Deal with Mother Nature!
- A Pizza Box that Loves the Earth
- Environmentally-Friendly Smart Bulb with 20 Year Lifespan
- How Destination Hotels is Celebrating Earth Day 2016
- Cosmetics Company Launches Recycling Program for Earth Day
- Eco Friendly Process Allows Grown Diamonds To Be Created Without Harming The Earth
- College Graduation Going Green With Gowns Made From Recycled Bottles
- Eco-friendly standing desk for Earth Day
But my favorite pitch is for a curated music-streaming service from Guvera. In honor of Earth Day, Guvera created a 50-track playlist in which each song is 5 minutes long. Guvera suggest that users listen to the playlist in the shower. From the company’s promotional material: “So you can jump in the shower and know that you’re doing your bit for water conservation by finishing up as the music fades out.”
Great idea, right? Alternately, you could use an egg timer, count backward from 300, recite the alphabet 10-and-a-half times, bathe with a friend or loved one, install an efficient shower head, give up showering altogether, spot-clean your dirty bits, or bathe in a nearby duck pond — just be sure to use Biodegradable Earth Day Soap™, available online or at your local retailer.
Many good things have come from Earth Day. The first Earth Day marches in 1970 gave rise to the modern environmental movement. It was integral for building public support for the creation of the Environmental Protection Agency and the passage of both the Clean Water and Endangered Species Acts. That first year, 20 million people took to classrooms, auditoriums, and city streets to show their support for the environment. That was one in 10 Americans. Congress even took the day off to participate. Yes, Congress.
But that was then. This Earth Day, we can expect the usual: modest efforts by well-meaning people who are outnumbered by tons of products begging to be sold.